JAY-R Taganas is already 27, among the elders in the Developmental League, but the former San Beda Red Lion is confident he still can fulfill his dream of making it to the pros.
AMA University’s undersized big man made waves recently when he matched a PBA record for rebounds for a local player with 29, attracting interest from pro club Kia.
Taganas said he has yet to be approached by any PBA team, but is working hard to prove he can be an asset to any team in the pros.
“Siguro lang gusto ko lang makabalik sa laro. Gusto ko lang matupad mga pangarap ko na makapasok sa PBA. Siguro kayang kaya pa. Si God lang naman magsasabi kung saan ako mapupunta,” Taganas said.
“Siguro kung kukunin, bakit hindi. ’Yun na ang chance,” said Taganas.
[See D-League player matches 39-year-old PBA record for most rebounds in game by a local]
Asked what he can offer to a PBA team, Taganas said: “Siguro ’yung depensa lang. Opensa naman darating lang naman ’yun.”
Generously listed at 6 feet 4 inches, Taganas set the D-League record in AMA’s loss to Cagayan Valley, equaling the mark set by 7-Up’s Marcelo Simbulan on June 1, 1975.
Taganas played for the entire 40 minutes, grabbing 11 offensive rebounds and 18 on the defensive end.
Kia later said Taganas is among the big men that the team is looking at in the D-League.
[See After record-breaking feat, Jay-R Taganas attracts interest from PBA team Kia]
“Hindi ko inaasahan ’yun,” Taganas said. “Hindi ko iniisip kung ilan na ang rebounds ko. Nagkataon lang na binigyan ako ng lakas. Nagulat din ako.”
AMA coach Mark Herrera noted the importance of the undersized big man to their campaign as they seek to reach the playoffs for the first time in franchise history.
“Isa ’yan sa mga pinagkakatiwalaan namin. Kahit sa ensayo, pinupukpok ko ’yan para pagdating sa laro, nasa kundisyon siya,” Herrera said.